Released – my word of the week

Custard the hen released in the garden

I was trying to work out what my word of the week was for this week, as I pottered around the garden. It’s beautiful today and the early butterflies and bees are everywhere in the garden. Sitting down on the bench, to take it all in, Custard the hen joined me. Looking deep into her eyes, I felt she was ready to discuss big thoughts. I’m sure she too is happy to shake off winter and be released into the garden for spring. Of course, in reality, she was probably demanding more tasty food, but I like to think she has more going on in that brain of hers.

Plus she’s been flying over the fence into that part of the garden for a few weeks.

She then hopped on to the back of the bench and tried to peck my hair. The moment was gone.

Hunky Punk

Hunky Punks and discoveries

This week feels like we’ve been released. I’ve been out and about, and not just running errands. We went on a Hunky Punk hunt, last weekend, which took us to a few churches that were new to us. Hunky Punk is the Somerset version of gruesomes. Purely decorative and generally found on the outside of medieval churches. We have a fair few of those.  There were dragons, lions and others to spot. I love the craftmanship and the way they’ve weathered over the centuries. More photos here.

Laurence Whistler glass engraving

In one church, we also discovered exquisite carvings on the windows, created by Laurence Whistler who was a celebrated poet and glass engraver. He was the first president of the British Guild of glass engravers.

Laurence Whistler glass engraving in Curry Rivel

I love it when we come across something so unexpected on our days out. His work can be found in places such as the Ashmolean in Oxford, Salisbury Cathedral, Corning Museum of Glass (USA) and a humble, little church in Curry Rivel, Somerset. I like that.

Making pile

No way as intricate, but my works in progress pile is one item less this week. I finally finished my curtains. The first half has been hanging, on its own, for a good few weeks now. I’m exceedingly pleased to say that its partner is now released from my to do list.

They do look good and I’m contemplating going the whole hog and investing in a pair of roped tie backs for them. The curtains were one curtain that I found in a charity shop for £6. I added lining and a header tape, so it came in at about £10, which just makes me enjoy them even more.

Released Easter biscuits

Easter preparations

In preparation for the holiday weekend, I made Easter biscuits. I’ve not made these for so long. Maybe not since school. I was spurred on this year after Middle daughter and I were in a little shop a few weeks ago and spotted local, homemade ones (we bought a pack). We started chatting to the person serving and it turns out that Easter biscuits originated in Somerset. Instead of mixed spice, they use cassia oil (Chinese cinnamon) to give that “Easter taste you’d expect“, as the lady behind the counter informed us. The oil symbolises the embalmment oil they used for Jesus.

She also told us the best place to buy cassia oil and I felt I was being handed inside knowledge. I squirreled it away. As an incomer, it’s always a treat to feel accepted.

Roll on this week, and I dug out my old school book for the recipe. I substituted the mixed spice for the cassia oil and made the biscuits. They are yummy. Not sure I can tell the difference, as I may be nose blind from filling the cottage with the smell of Easter. They do taste good and the rest of the family agree.

Hens released in the garden


Of course, Custard the hen and her friends supplied the eggs for the biscuits. I released our small flock out into the larger garden today and it is fun seeing them exploring. Custard loves joining in my gardening jobs. Always under my feet, but I am fond of her. The other two (Rhubarb and Dolce) are happy to do their own thing nearby.

School broke up on Wednesday. Youngest, who is the only one at school now, is back at his part time gardening job, which he enjoys. With one sister away and his other sister working shifts, I have to keep reminding myself who is home and needs feeding. I’m sure I’ll forget someone one day, but it hasn’t happened yet.

Hope everyone is having a good weekend. We’ve had blue skies and sun all day, which is a treat.

I’m joining in Anne’s word of the week linky.

Word of the Week linky


  1. Life sounds blissful huh. I love that you have hens. We did have some years ago but the fox came one night and ruined all our dreams. The church hunt sounds interesting too. I’ve not heard of that spice/flavouring before. But then again I’ve not heard of Easter cookies before. Hopefully, you have a lovely Easter of food, family and reflections. And don’t forget who you have at home to feed!

    1. The flavouring was a new one on me too. I did a bit more research and it seems to be a thing. We did enjoy visiting the different churches. I do love the old buildings.

  2. I don’t want to jinx it but we are having some lovely weather.
    The Hunky Punk hunt sounds like fun. Those carvings on the windows are beautiful and those biscuits look so good. x

    1. Ha! Let’s hope the weather holds. The biscuits soon disappeared, so I think everyone enjoyed them.

  3. I have never seen engraved glass in churches before, but I love it. It’s probably because my churches are so much newer here in the US than in Great Britain. Such craftsmanship.

    1. The engraved windows are a new one for me too. I can’t remember seeing it before, but maybe I’ve not been looking. These engravings are from the 20th century.

  4. mmmmm, Easter biscuits, I’ve not made any for years ether. It’s never too late right? I love the sound of the hunky punk hunk and the engraved window is beautiful, as are your curtains and such a bargain. I spend a fortune on curtains because my cats like to climb them!

    1. Oh yes. Still plenty of time for Easter biscuits. I thought they were a more widespread biscuit, but I’m beginning to think they’re an English tradition. Having had cats in the past, I’ve had a few curtains ruined by adventurous felines, so I feel your pain.

  5. Those glass etchings are gorgeous! What a fun find while exploring. The Easter biscuits look yummy; though I have never seen anything like that in the states. The only thing most stores sell around here at Easter are hot cross buns and I am not a fan of those at all but I do tend to love most anything with a cinnamon/spice taste.

    1. Hot cross buns are very popular here too. Different flavours seem to be creeping in now, but I still love the traditions ones with dried fruit. The glass etchings were such a lovey surprise.

  6. Hearing about Custard the hen made me chuckle, she seems precious. Your biscuits sound delightful. What a great word of the week, it seemed to fit into your week just right.
    Visiting today from #MMBC #2

    1. Thank you. It did suit my week. Custard is a character. She’s the one who pecks at our door hoping to be let in.

  7. The Hunky Punk hunt sounds like fun. I need to look up more often when visiting old churches. Those carvings on the window are stunning. Well done on finishing the curtains. I love the fabric. The Easter biscuits look delicious. Glad the hens are enjoying having more freedom. #WotW

    1. I’m so pleased with my curtains. It’s good quality fabric from the feel of it, so hopefully they’ll be good for many years. The Hunky Punks are fun. I find myself examining all church spires more closely.

  8. The Hunky Punk hunt sounds fun! I love the detailed carvings they are so pretty.
    Your curtains look fab, I really need to update some of mine too. And I love the name ‘Custard’. That has to be the coolest hen ever! xx

    1. Custard is definitely the spokes-hen for her flock. Her name seems to suit her. Hunky Punk hunting becomes compulsive. I can’t go past aa church without looking!

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